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    Stay Protected: Get a Tetanus Booster

    Tetanus shots are required every 10 years. Are you up-to-date with your shots?


    Nonpregnant, healthy people between ages 5 and 49 can be immunized with either the flu shot or the nasal spray vaccine FluMist.

    Measles, mumps, rubella (MMR). Adults born after 1957 may need MMR vaccination if they do not have evidence of immunity. Women should avoid becoming pregnant for 28 days after vaccination with MMR vaccine. Women who are known or suspected to be pregnant and people who have certain impaired immune systems should not receive the MMR vaccine.

    Pneumococcal polysaccharide vaccine (PPV or "pneumonia" vaccine). This immunization is recommended for all people 65 years and older. It is also advised for those who have a chronic disease, such as heart or lung disease, do not have a spleen, or have a damaged spleen. There is a one-time revaccination booster after five years. This vaccine is different from the pneumococcal conjugate vaccine that is recommended for children.

    Meningococcal vaccine. This vaccine should be considered for those who are:

    • At increased risk of becoming infected, such as persons with a damaged spleen or removed spleen.
    • At risk for exposure: travel to areas of the world where meningococcal disease is common, such as to certain parts of Africa or to Saudi Arabia during the Hajj.
    • Going to live in a college dormitory or military barracks.

    This vaccine protects against infection that can cause life-threatening meningococcal disease, including meningitis.

    HPV vaccine (human papillomavirus vaccine). The HPV vaccine is currently recommended for women 26 or younger who haven't already received it. You should not get this vaccine if you are pregnant. The HPV vaccine protects against types of HPV responsible for 70% of cervical cancers and 90% of genital warts.

    Before you become pregnant, discuss your vaccine and immunization history with your health care provider. If you need vaccines for chickenpox or measles, mumps, and rubella (MMR), wait at least four weeks after the immunization before becoming pregnant.

    If you are pregnant, your children should receive their immunizations on schedule. You do not need to speed up or delay your child's immunizations.

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    Reviewed on April 26, 2007

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